(translated by Shaun Green from the Afrikaans article, a deacon in the English Congregation at GK Rietvallei)
Sibosiso Bavuma (front), Imanuel Bavuma, Nkosithande Mthewa, Jabulani Bavuma and Siphiwe Bavuma (rear left to right) praying yesterday in a traditional outdoor church for the victims of the Bloodbath at the Lonmin Marikana mine. Photo: Theana Breugem (Beeld)
Two statements follow, first the statement of the RCSA deputation, followed by a statement of my own:
1. MEDIA STATEMENT ABOUT THE MASSACRE AT MARIKANA
On behalf of the Reformed Churches in South Africa, we express our shock over the violence and loss of life during the labour unrest at the Longmin Mine at Marikana.
The fact that an ordinary labor dispute could degenerate into a massacre of such a magnitude, indicates once again the fragility and brokenness of the South African society. The political settlement reached in South Africa does not exempt us from the destructive effects that social, class and labor differences, can have on everyone in our country.
Therefore, we call upon every responsible role player in civil society, the corporate sector and the trade unions, to handle and address differences in a responsible manner.
We appeal to the government to bring deliberate leadership to bear, not by senseless violence alone, but by fulfilling a stabilizing role of peace and assurance of safety.
We appeal to Christians to address differences in the disposition of Jesus Christ. In this way we can make a huge difference in the heartbeat of South African society.
It is further disturbing that the tragic events are exploited by someone like Julius Malema to score political points over the bodies of fellow South Africans.
On behalf of the Reformed Churches in South Africa we express our deepest sympathy with the many injured and the families of those who have died.
On behalf of the Government Deputation of the Reformed Churches in South Africa,
Rev. Cassie Aucamp (Chair.)
2. Statement of Repentance Before Christ in Such Tragic Times, by S. Le Cornu
In the statement above we read:
“The fact that an ordinary labor dispute could degenerate into a massacre of such a magnitude, indicates once again the fragility and brokenness of the South African society. The political settlement reached in South Africa does not exempt us from the destructive effects that social, class and labor differences can have on everyone in our country.”
I would like to formulate the sentences and statement on this matter above, as follows:
The fact that an ordinary labor dispute could degenerate into a tragic massacre of such a magnitude, indicates once again the sinfulness and rebellion of our South African society that has unfortunately turned it’s back on God and his precepts (Psalm 2:1-3). Scripture (James 4:1-2) shows us the deepest crisis and need of man: our sinful hearts, and not our economic or political disputes. From our sinful hearts proceed the ‘wars’ and ‘bloodbaths’ of our age:
“From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.”
In James 4:13-16 the Word also addresses the lustful sinful heart of our culture of human rights, that deceives people that they have the ‘right’ to everything and can demand that all their desires should be met, regardless of whether it violates the fifth commandment, or if it is God’s will:
“Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that. But now ye rejoice in your boastings: all such rejoicing is evil.”
The political settlement reached in South Africa – where the Triune God is sadly not recognised as the only true God, and His good just laws are not acknowledged in the legislation of the new dispensation – has a terribly destructive effect on our beautiful country and its peoples, including and especially concerns of social, class and labor differences. Our country and all its people are living with the consequences of a country that has been surrendered to a non-Christian humanist regime with all its crime, injustice, bloodbaths, moral decay and abuse of power, and a government that is unable to maintain law and order.
May each of us repent, who helped plan this surrender (CODESA and beyond), despite all the good intentions and other good things that might have flowed therefrom. We now realize that in our striving for a non-racial South Africa, that along with apartheid, we should not have also thrown out the Christian faith and tradition of our country for all its people.
We should not have surrendered our country and its people to a polytheistic state, a humanistic constitution, a socialist state-economy, and even less to a government that has no fear of God and His precepts, and therefore does not love and protect its most innocent citizens (which means they also has no respect for their ‘human rights’), namely the culture of abortion murder that was legalized in 1997.
Since 1997 an average of 85,000 abortion bloodbaths and massacres have taken place each year, which means that since the Marikana Mine massacre (16 May, in which 34 people died), there have been 230 bloodbaths a day in abortion-murder clinics and hospitals, totalling 1,150 people killed in five days. Maybe ‘legal’ according to the humanistic constitution, but not legal and right before the Creator and Lawgiver of all people (Exodus 20: 13), Who will one day judge every unjust blood-shedding, and require a reckoning of those of us that allowed and tolerated it.
The surrender to a non-Christian dispensation, was and remains a betrayal of Christ and His Word, and lacks love for our neighbor.
We call ourselves, all citizens, and particularly all leaders, including political and economic leaders, to kiss the Son, Jesus Christ, as the only God, Redeemer and Sustainer of South Africa, and to respect His laws where they address society, that He may be merciful to our country and its people in His righteous judgments (Psalm 2: 10-12).
Let us realize that as far as our own lives, families, congregations, communities and country are concerned, the truth of Psalm 127: 1-3 stands firm for ever … all the more so for all our ‘political’ and ‘labor’ differences:
“Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.”
May our heavenly Father be near the many injured and the families of those who have died, and provide them with the only hope – Jesus Christ, Who is the Way, the Truth and the Life, and that comforts each of us in this world but also calls us to answer His call:
“I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?” (John 11: 25-26)
May He have mercy on us that we may return to the King of kings and Lord of lords, in our entire lives, including those of us who must bear witness to the authorities of the day (1 Timothy 6: 13-16, 2 Timothy 4: 2).